The Ocean Between Us 11 Book Giveaway

Filed Under: Book Related, Reviews/Giveaways

First things first. I’m excited about this giveaway because it is huge. Really, really huge. But I’ll get to that in a minute.

I was sent this book called The Ocean Between Us [affiliate link]. One of the things that interested me about the story is it’s about a Navy family. And Tucker’s in the Navy. He used to be Active but now he’s in the Reserves and though he never was deployed, he’s going to be gone for three weeks to Key West for the Navy and the whole point is I figured I could identify with the characters.

And I could. And all of these characters got under my skin and I would reread the book if I still had it. But, alas, Alana has my copy.

I had a dream about these guys.

If you’ve read any of my “reviews” you know I always want to spoil the ending. I want to talk about the WHOLE book. I want to discuss it and argue and share and basically bore people who haven’t read the book. Luckily for you guys, I was provided with a synopsis. It doesn’t ruin the ending. Yay!

Steve Bennett is a perfect navy officer with a perfect navy family, and he’s confident that his world is just the way it should be. But his son wants to be an artist instead of attending the U.S. Naval Academy, and his stalwart and capable wife of 20 years, Grace, is tired of being the perfect navy wife. She wants her own home, and she wants her own career. She’s feeling altogether unsettled, but nothing is more unsettling than the secret her husband has hidden from her their entire marriage. Nothing, that is, until the accident on the carrier.

There is a long version but the short version does a good job too.

Loved this book. I hope Alana hurries up with it.

In addition to getting The Ocean Between Us [affiliate link], I also received a big box with ten of Susan Wiggs’s past books which I haven’t had a chance to read yet but if they’re anything like The Ocean Between Us, I should probably start now since I’m going to be reading them back to back.

Giveaway time!

In The Ocean Between Us, Steve has basically been gone for half of his marriage to Grace. So, I want to know in the comments below, if your husband [or wife] was gone for half the year, what would you do?

The contest will run from now until June 11th at 10am CDT and then I’ll shut off the comments. One comment per person. The 11 book prize will be mailed to US mailing addresses only but if you’re international and you know someone with a US address then you too can enter. Yay for you!

ALSO, I have three of these puppies to giveaway…each valued at $100.50. One sweet box of books for three different people.

Get to commenting!


Comments are closed, children.

Drum roll, please?

And the winners are…

I’ll email the winners. Congrats, y’all!


  1. aisling says

    I’ll enter your contest, I like Susan Wiggs. I would make one of my many brothers or sisters move in with me because six months alone with five kids would have me going bananas. And probably be on skype with video chat every single day.

  2. If TheMister were gone for a half-of a year. I’d cry. I’d learn to Vlog, get comfortable with Skype and I’d write a lot. I’d spend time at the gym making my body totally buff and purdy so that when he came home he’d be impressed, too. Or maybe I’d just play in the kitchen creating new recipes and making myself fat! 😀

  3. You turned me on to the Sookie Stackhouse books and I just LOVED all of them. So your book recommending credibility is high with me 😉

    When I was married, he was deployed to Iraq for 4 months. I went to live with my parents as he didn’t want me and our soon to be 2 year old son living in an apartment alone. I just concentrated on my school work and wrote to him a lot. I took a TON of pics for him so he wouldn’t miss anything while he was gone. It was tough but I had to keep trying to live my life not consumed with worry.

  4. I know you. You have a US mailing address… does that count!?

    I’d likely do the same damn thing I do now. LOL He’s practically gone that much anyway. BUT! If I were childless and had lots of money and no work, I’d travel and people watch all over the world.


  5. I’m entered! Thanks for the tweet about it.

  6. PhineasPoe says

    Never heard of the author but I would probably stay in touch with a combination of bbm, skype, email and old fashioned letters.

  7. Texasshinergirl says

    Well my partner(who worked on rigs) was gone half a year for 6 years before he was killed on an oil rig. Needless to say he had a hard job. we kept in touch by letter and phone when he could access both. But most of the time I was lonely and talked to my female friends alot. Wish i had twitter back then it would have been easier. I spent alot of the time working on sewing projects that he failed to understand when he was home. So it ended up that i had one life with him and one on my own. Trying to stay on a level when he was away was tough, i was young and pretty and men offered me alot, but i stayed faithful and knew one day he would be back. Hopefully i will find someone like that again. The kind of man you want to wait at home for. And if you like charity work you can work and keep busy. Trust is a big thing.

  8. I’ll play too. 🙂 If my significant other was gone for 6 months out of the year, I’d keep myself very busy with friends. I’d spend as much time away from home with the kids keeping busy. I’d also probably drink more wine (not really a bad thing) and get fat (that part is not so good).

  9. Cherrie says

    After 30 years of marriage there are days I would love it if my hubby were gone for 6 months Truthfully though I’m the daughter of a career army father and there were times he was gone for a year or more I grew up watching my mom and I would be like her. She always made sure she had her own life and did her own thing. Since I’ve built a life for myself with work and friends I would spend time with them and keep myself busy probably go back to school. I would also be on line as much as possible with him.

  10. Those are the best kinds of books to read. I love the books that move you, and totally work you over.

  11. Sorry. I’m phone posting. Haha

    It would be so difficult to have my husband gone for half a year. Almost a year ago my husbands exwife died and we recieved their daughter. We had been going through issues just to see her and now we had this little monkey full time. Long story short my daughter is developmentally delayed and everyday is a battle. I don’t know what I would do without my husband.

    I honestly think my husbands exwifes family would try and take her from me. That would kill me.

  12. If my husband were gone for half of the year I would probably throw myself into my work and visit friends as often as I could. I personally don’t like to be by myself so I would try to surround myself with loved ones as much as possible until he was back to help keep me from wigging out so much. 🙂 Otherwise I would probably get depressed.

  13. Koeniou says

    My dad has been deployed to Iraq twice now. Here in Australia we’re pretty blessed, you can send a 2kg package as often as you want for free overseas to deployed personnel. Both times what my mum and I did was we sent a box every week to him with stuff that he couldn’t get – biscuits, decent teabags, lollies & magazines etc. We also e-mailed him as much as possible and when he could he phoned us at home (he rang me on my 21st birthday and I bawled like a baby). He sent us back things that he bought in the bazaars and e-mail photos.

    On a personal level I basically fell apart while he was gone – first time I stopped going to uni, stopped caring about my diabetes management and nearly got fired. Second time was a bit better, I didn’t get fired but I did end up in hospital briefly because of my diabetes.

    Its a bit different than a husband going away, but that is how we ‘managed’. My mum actually did far better than I did, she has a much larger and stronger support group of friends.

  14. i’d probably pursue my knitting craft by teaching others how to do it, in my home for free. we’d donate the items to local places that need them the most.. i do listen to books on tapes and thus i’m multitasking every time i knit :}

  15. I would probably be able to keep the house cleaned! LOL! I would be able to finish the novel I have been working on for a while now. I would miss him, but I think after 14 years we would probably enjoy the break from each other (with at least phone calls) and it would “revive” our relationship when he returned because we would appreciate each other more. Living together day in and day out, you don’t really appreciate that person until they are not there when you want them to be.

    By the way, I love Susan Wiggs and her books!

  16. while I’m not sure what I would do… I’ll tell you what my sis-in-law did.. Train for a marathon… well.. not just a marathon… the Goofy Challenge… a marathon and a half marathon.

  17. Sue Barton says

    My husband and son were out of state for nearly a year while they helped my father-in-law sort things out after he had a stroke and my mother-in-law passed away (yeah, it was a rough year.) We spent a lot of time on the phone sharing the trivial parts of our days. We even got in the habit of calling and watching TV programs together. I sent them a lot of cards and treats to remind them of home. We made it! And I’m glad they were able to share that year with my husband’s dad.

  18. If my husband were gone 6 months, I’d simply do what I do now when he’s away on business — live my life. Work, write, take care of the farm, see friends, garden, knit, and read. We talk several times a day when he’s away, but we managed without that when we were young and couldn’t afford the phone bills. The time apart makes the time together sweeter.

  19. Gone for six months? With two kids that would automatically keep me busy, but, being poly I’ve got someone around me who would keep me company while my husband was away and I would not be cheating on him (he knows about the second significant other) at all. I would also find a way to spend more time with friends and try to participate in the things that interest me.

    The biggest factor to how well the six months would go by would be, can I contact him in any way, shape or form? Will we have e-mail access to each other? Skype? Phone? Or old fashioned snail-mail? If so, it will make it easier… if not, well, as I said, I’ve got a second significant other that would help me when I really needed it.

  20. Lindy Yeager says

    errrrrr, ummmmmmm, welllllllll … would that be before or after the celebration I’d have knowing the bathroom would stay cleaner longer ?? Seriously, I was married to a wonderful guy who spent 20 years of our 25 year marriage overseas on one continent or another for more than half the year. At times he was so far inland there would be no contact for weeks at a time. I had two sets of friends, one just for me and one I shared with him. We had wonderful adventures and stories but it does take its toll and my heart goes out to young spouses raising younglings and worrying about their man/woman. So what did I do? Well I found out a former neighbor had written some books and as an avid reader I sought them out. That neighbor was Susan Wiggs and I have anxiously awaited each book she has written. They are the only books I won’t share with others, they are just too good to let go and often re-read them all. Its kinda cool to see her use names of establishments and people we knew. I didn’t come down for a week after she used my name in An Ocean Between Us, it doesn’t matter that she made me a teenaged stalker !!! My life has been so much like Grace’s that she inspired me to use my talents to start my own business as a Special Events Coordinator – when I wasn’t busy reading Susan’s books or other authors she recommends. Congratulations on finding Susan and thank you for giving us a platform for sharing her with others.

    • oops, sorry Susan … THE Ocean Between Us … gotta respect the author … wanna respect the author … lol

  21. aimeef says

    Oh my gosh, that is such a tough question! Not so much the question, but the thought that goes on behind it. One, I would so hate that. I guess I would just continue on as I normally do. As a mother of two teenage girls who works a full time job, there isn’t a whole lot to change at this point because there is not much spare time for “us:”. More that likely bunches more running for the kids. God bless those who do this on a regular basis!!!

  22. Not to be raunchy or crude but knowing my weakness is being terribly lonely I would probably end up having an affair. I think I would though try to be strong especially if there were kids but I think I would have a really hard time with the absences of my spouse (if I were married).

  23. Kim Ghramm says

    I continue with my life every time my husband leaves on deployment. Last year I spent raising our 3 girls and my sisters 4 children while my husband was deployed for 275 days. I didn’t have a car that could fit everyone in it. I had a lot of amazing friends and am very lucky to have a mom that helped me through a lot of very hard times. So, when you have a husband who is gone for half of the year (or more), you learn to depend on yourself and you also make sure that your children know that what their dad does is very important and that they should be very proud of him and the job he does. You pick yourself up after saying good, and you go on with what you have to do every day. You clean you house, you take care of the car, you do the dishes, you get the kids to dr. appointments, dentist appointments, and every other appointment that they have (and that you have usually forgotten about), and you make the most out of life! You show your pride for your husband and what he does. I’m one of the lucky few to be married to a US Navy Submariner and my best friend!

  24. Andrea Marshall says

    That would be extremely hard for me, because my husband and I have literally not been apart since we were married on June 29, 1996. If one of us has to go out of town for something, we both go. If it came to the point where I had to stay at home while he went out of town, I would keep in touch with him every day. I would probably take on more hours at work to try to pass the time, and would definitely keep myself busy; maybe go to school or do something to better myself.

  25. KCBlue says

    I can’t even imagine that concept, since my husband and I started dating in 1999 we have only been apart 2 days, and that was in the first month. If it had to happen though, once I stopped crying I think I would concentrate on writing, taking pictures, and doing everything I could to detail everything we did at home while he was gone. It might ease our feeling of separation for me and our daughter by sending notes everyday either by mail, email or whatever is available. I suffer from insomnia already but I can’t help but think it would be even worse without him to cuddle up to at night. I would imagine many sleepless nights sitting at the kitchen table alone…

  26. Stacie Gray says

    I would go out of my mind if my spouse were gone for half the year, I would make my sister move in with me I guess & pester our neighbors to help me get things done around the house. I read The Ocean Between Us, I read all of Susan Wiggs books that are in print, I’m not sure Navy wives (or any branch of military)) do it! I’m perfectly aware that men/women are needed in the military but if they have spouses/sig others/children, I’m not sure how they survive, I don’t think I would!

  27. I have been through a year deployment so this isn’t so tough a question. I was also in the military so it makes it that much easier having been away from family and friends for long lengths of time.

    I would move home, we are stationed in TX and we are from MA (grew up in the same town). I have 2 young girls, 3 years and almost 2 years old. This time around, since I wouldn’t be pregnant with my second like I was for his deployment, I would pursue my college education. I also spent most of my free time with my girls, playing with them and teaching them new things. I love crafts, so I would probably find some projects for our house and I e-mailed him pictures and updates about our weekly goings-on as well as milestones with the kiddos. I loved to send care packages with gaming magazines, junk food that he liked since I knew he wasn’t getting every meal due to patrols, and fun little things to remind him of things we had done in the past, or just little mementos of me and the girls.

  28. My husband actually is gone for about half the year. Some years a little more, some less. It was really hard at first.

    what I do is live my life. We talk often, even if it’s just texts. I don’t freak if I don’t talk to him, since that would drive me nuts. He works a physically demanding job, so some days he is going to be too tired, & that’s ok. I spend time with my kids & dogs. And I Read. I read a lot. Which is why I started my book review blog. 🙂 I may as well share what i’m reading & what I think of the books with someone.

    the best thing I think we can do for Husbands who are gone are to get to know who We are. Know yourself & be happy with who you are. It makes the time easier since you aren’t on hold waiting for him. It also makes it easier on him since he knows you will be ok.

  29. Kristy Epperson says

    My husband has served in the US Navy for almost 20 years now. He has been gone alot in that time. With 4 kids, and going from the west coast to the east coast, it wasn’t easy. I was alone with the kids, in new towns, several times. I stayed busy with school functions, and running the household. I had to be mom and dad and then learn to let my husband be dad when he got home. It wasn’t easy at times, but we made it through. So proud of the service my husband has given. Our kids are getting married, heading to college and just finishing her first year of high school. It’s an exciting time in our lives, and scary at the same time.

  30. Denise Flynn says

    I would cry. I would cry alot and I would cry some more.
    When I wasn’t crying, I’d read, read, read.

    I’d also pray for his safety.

  31. If the DH were gone for 6 whole months? Just Breathe!

    (Ok….and get a LOT done….wear sloppy pj’s all day…..write any time I wanted…..listen to the quiet……..play with my children with full size tents in the house…..enjoy being able to mow the lawn myself….in swirly patterns……and occationally……write him a letter telling him how much we miss him).

    Karen Henry
    p.s…Ocean Between Us is the BEST Susan’s done so far…that’s saying a LOT since she’s amazing!

  32. Sheila says

    If my husband were gone for half a year, I would carry on with my life, communicate with him as much as possible, and hope for his safe return.

  33. Hanushe Karafili says

    I’ve read all of your book and love them! The Ocean Between Us was lovely..

  34. My husband is a retired Marine. I have done various things while he was gone: worked mostly, and volunteered for overtime, spent extra time with my daughter, one of my sons, also a Marine was gone at the same time once, painted every room in the house, work extra, did all of the yard work, paid all the bills, did all of the home maintenance. The only time you have to feel lonesome is in bed at night because you have the whole bed to yourself, and then most of the time you are too tired to stay awake too long to think about it. The last time he was gone was the only time we had a lot of email access, which was very nice. During Desert Storm, we had a $1,ooo. telephone bill one month, after the war was over and just waiting for him to get transportation home. He had an office with a phone and I could direct dial, just too easy. In the early years all we had was letters, which I still have. I did save hard copies of some of the emails. During OIF, he was already retired and working for a contractor and because of satallite phones, I was only calling TX and I had unlimited long distance with my carrier. He would get leave a couple of times a year and I would fly to Rome, Ireland, Rome to see him, and I would spend the time in between planning the trips, and also working and volunteering. As the bumper sticker says “Marine wife – the hardest job in the Corps”

  35. I would be okay if my husband was away for 6 months because I am a strong person and quite independant. I would PAINT…..I’m a watercolorist and I’d paint up a storm, of course I also love to read too so I’d pick out some good SUSAN WIGGS books to read while he was gone. I’d spend time with my granddaughters who are a joy to be around and I’d take tons of pictures to fill him in when he got home.

  36. Vanessa says

    Actually, I have family and most of my closest friends are all military or work in the merchant marines. One just left to go and clean up the spill… it is hard when people you care about spend a good part of the year away. There is email and skype for staying in touch; so we are way better off than people used to be. I do read a whole lot more when they are gone, and when they are in town… there is a whole lot more going! When they are gone though….You get by. You worry and pray, put things in the freezer, craft stuff, read, and then do it all again.

  37. Michelle Branting says

    Been there a few times already. My husband just retired from the Air Force. I read more books, spent a lot of time on e-mail, kept my phone attached to me afraid I would miss one of his weekly calls that you never knew when was coming, had to be Mom and Dad, and learned to take care of things I never thought I would do.
    2 seconds ago ·

  38. Hollyn says

    Ironic that you posted about this, when Pickle left last week for 6+ to a very hot, sandy place. Personally, I don’t think it’s that big of a deal. I was reading some of the other comments about how women couldn’t cope with their husband gone that long. Yeah, you do. You wake up every morning, go about life every day, just like if he were here. Do I miss my husband already? Hell yes. Do I want to kill my kids already? Oh heck yeah! Jack’s behavior has gone downhill…

    The thing is, it’s not just being gone. It’s the workup to being gone. The time that he’s home, but his mind is still at work. His heart is at home, but just can’t quite get his mind there. He’ a solider, that’s who he is. It’s a part of him. Our marriage isn’t just Pickle and I (and the kids). Our marriage is about how to make his passion, his career a part of our lives.

    We do pretty well. As you know, it’s been touch and go for years. I’ve struggled with finding who I am, in the midst of losing myself as a Navy wife. 9 moves in 6 years makes you re-evaluate what is really important. This wasn’t the life I thought I was going to have, while getting my engineering degree.

    But, it’s okay. I love my life. I love my kids. My friends that I’ve made through Pickle being in the Navy are the best and strongest friendships I’ll ever have. When you know you aren’t going to spend the rest of your life in the same town with your best friend, you make the conversations count. You hope that one day, you’ll actually live within driving distance again to be able to see her.

    As I sit here, I’m looking at the two little clocks I have on my desktop. One says that it’s 7:38pm in Pickle-land (it’s 9:40 am here). The other clock is the more important one. 198 days until my best guess as to when he comes home. It actually doesn’t seem that long. I’ve got stuff to do and keep me occupied. I won’t be tied to my computer, waiting for the next Skype from Pickle.

    I’m happy with who I am, where I am and I’m content in our marriage. Having Pickle around is a bonus that I just don’t get all the time. It teaches me to appreciate when he actually is home.

  39. Stay up too late because there’s no one to sleep next to(even though I complain about not having enough room when he’s home). Keep the house too clean, there would be no one to distract me with fun stuff. Cry more, laugh less and count the days until he came home.

  40. Quickly go insane & have him have to come home because they’ve committed me and someone has to be responsible for the kids.

    I’m quickly going to get a small taste of this, this summer as I’m going to take our kids to live by the beach (30 mins away) and Daddy will come on weekends. Our oldest wants to take jr. guards (she’s 7) and started boogie boarding in earnest & was starting to stand up on a surf board on her first “lesson” (neighbor letting his daughters & her have a try, she was doing it, they live there, are the same age & were not yet.) It seems I have a surfer on my hands & the sooner she learns what bring safe in the ocean is, the better. For a month, we’re going to try it out. It’s an adventure, right? I have back problems, so Daddy getting home is my saving grace most days. I should lose lots of weight, my mind & any frustrations I have w/my husband. 😉
    .-= mamaspeak´s last blog ..First World Problems =-.

  41. I’d probably do the same thing I do when my husband is on outage. Suck it up and soldier through.
    I’m a navy brat and we survived. Is it the best family scenario? Nope, but you deal with the hand you’re dealt, do your best not to drop the fragile things, and make up for lost time when you’re given that moment.
    .-= Heather Solos´s last blog ..Picnic Possibilities =-.

  42. Jessica Baake says

    Who am I kidding, if Paul were gone for 6 months I would just about lose my mind…at first. I would obsess about it and cry and be mad for months leading up to the terrible day. I would plan care boxes and wonder who would cut the grass. I would prepare the kids, all along knowing that it was really ME who needed preparing. I would think about all the things we WOULDN’T get to do together. The holidays we would miss. The birthdays, the Saturdays. I would think about not having IT for SIX months?!

    I would wonder if we would make it.

    Then, after he left, I would start trudging. Head down, not enjoying a thing, probably snapping at my kids, not eating healthy because there is *no one* to cook for. And slowly but surely I would learn how to get by. The kids and I would miss him. We’d talk about him every day. We would make him cards and cookies. We would talk about the big party we would throw him when he got back. We’d call when we could. We’d still cry sometimes.

    But, the yard would get mowed. And I would realize that I DID have people to cook for. My kids. And mySELF. And I would miss him. And I would miss him. And I would miss him.

    And then he’d come home.

  43. Im doing this because Im pretty sure my wife would love these books.
    Im pretty sure I would be screwed if she left for six months. I would eat McDonalds every day and no one could force me to change my clothes. I would be fine feeding the boys (9 month old twins) until they moved onto real foods. I guess I could buy them McDonalds too, and end up on Maury Povich. In all seriousness without my wife I would be lost. She does a lot for me and I try to do a lot for her.

  44. If my husband were gone for half the year…I’m glad I don’t have to actually deal with that as he is out of the Navy. I would spend my time focusing on our baby which is due in 3 weeks along with making sure I recorded as much as possible to share with Hubby. My sister-in-law will be alone with her two boys soon when her husband ships out with the Army so we would spend a lot of time together.
    I’d miss Hubby tremendously but would try hard to live as normally as I could til he returned.


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